A survey of 1,033 people by recruiting experts Hays has found around two-thirds of employees living with a disclosed disability say their organisation’s leaders do not fully understand the business benefits of diversity and inclusion. More than eight in ten feel their chance of being accepted for a job has been lowered in the past because of their disability.
Hays’s survey results can be grouped into three key findings:
1. There is a belief that recruitment bias exists:
• 83 per cent said there had been an occasion where they felt that their chance of being accepted for a job was lowered because of their disability;
• 66 per cent of people living with a disclosed disability believe their leaders have a bias towards those who look, think or act like them.
2. Business benefits of diversity and inclusion aren’t understood:
• Just 37 per cent of people living with a disclosed disability said their organisation’s leaders understand the link between diversity and inclusion and talent attraction;
• 41 per cent said leaders understand the link to customer insight;
• 32 per cent said leaders understand the link to creativity and innovation;
• 22 per cent said leaders understand the link to profitability;
• 34 per cent said leaders understand the link to employee engagement and staff retention.
3. A trust deficit exists:
• 34 per cent of people living with a disclosed disability trust their leaders to deliver change on the diversity and inclusion agenda;
• 32 per cent believe that their line manager is committed to increasing diversity within their team;
• Less than one quarter (24 per cent) said their leaders are role models for diversity and inclusion who challenge traditional viewpoints and established ways of working.
“Through this survey, we sought to share a snapshot of the lived experience of people living with disabilities in the world of work in Australia & New Zealand,” says Nick Deligiannis, managing director of Hays in Australia & New Zealand. “The human case for building fairer and more inclusive workplaces is certain; regardless of background, everyone deserves to work in a safe, supportive and respectful environment. There is also a vital business case for diversity and inclusion which at its heart drives increased access to and active participation in the world of work from all parts of society,” he said.
In conjunction with JobAccess, Hays have produced a Guide to Disability in the Recruitment Process to share with employers. “The guide is full of useful information about improving all aspects of the recruitment cycle, reminding us that often simple changes to established practices can potentially open an organisation to a wealth of previously untapped talent,” says Nick.
The recommendations cover developing a workplace plan, communication, attraction and selection, workplace flexibility and managing and developing staff.